Over the past few weeks, the world as we know it has been changing at a rapid pace. Phrases like ‘self-isolation’, ‘social distancing’ and ‘flattening the curve’ have become a part of our daily lingo. We’re being asked to stay home, schools and attractions are closed, sporting events are on hold, the stock market is plummeting and fear is spreading among us. And, at the same time, we’re fighting to remain positive and keep ourselves and our families busy while adapting to a new reality.
Although many Canadians are fortunate to be able to work from home while we practice social distancing, many are being laid off because it’s not possible to work remotely or companies simply don’t have work available right now. Forced to stay away from work, many people now have the added stress of wondering how they’re going to make ends meet.
Financial obligations such as mortgage payments are weighing heavily on the minds of many. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important to discuss your options with your mortgage agent as soon as possible.
Let’s talk about your options
Mortgage default management tools offered by the federal government may be just what you need to help you through this difficult and unprecedented time. Or, perhaps we can tap into your home equity through a refinance so you can free up some extra cashflow.
Options such as deferring your payments, converting your interest rate from variable to the extremely low fixed, lowering your monthly payments by extending the amortization period as well as special payment arrangements are all available and worth investigating. Currently, lenders have been given the green light by the government to allow mortgage payment deferrals for up to six months.
It’s important to note, however, that these measures are only for those whose income is being affected by COVID-19 and this solution will add interest to your mortgage payments when they do resume.
Additional efforts are continually being announced and implemented by the government to help Canadians. For instance, special circumstances have been established regarding mortgage forbearance for insured mortgages – meaning lenders won’t be able to foreclose on your mortgage during this time should you be unable to make your payments.
Processes have also been altered for employment insurance and sickness claims including waiving any required waiting period and prioritizing application processing related to the virus.
Help for businesses
The federal government has allocated $10 billion to help businesses, particularly small business owners, ease the burden and allow Canadians to concentrate on your financial as well as your physical wellbeing.
Have questions about your mortgage options? Answers are a call or email away!